It is easy to fall into despair with regard to the slow and uneven pace of progress. We take two steps forward and one step back. It is important to realize that it is still progress. That one backward step can feel like the whole thing has come completely unraveled. But that is never the case. When you are in the middle of a year like 2020 filled with social upheaval, you are tempted to think all our previous efforts were for naught. That is why we need reminders that our hope is not in vain.
Progress comes in many forms and is often not recognized when it arrives. That is partly because it often comes during times of great distress. Look at the periods that immediately follow tragedy to discover the seeds of lasting change. Here is some of the recent progress that is worth noting:
There was a time when the only housing option was buying a house or living with your parents who already bought a house. Renting a house was a possibility. But it was almost as expensive as buying. There is also the fact that not everyone has the same needs. Some professionals only need accommodations for a limited amount of time. So a long lease agreement would not work for their mobile situation.
Today, it is much easier to find furnished apartments that can accommodate the lifestyle of a mobile executive or digital nomad. We now have options for furnished or unfurnished apartments with short or long-term leases. If you have an assignment in a city that will last for over a month with no definite end, you can get an indefinite lease. Many of these new options are even pet-friendly. These new leasing options are not universal. But they are getting much easier to find and are a lot more affordable than you think.
Options for Healthy Eating
It used to be that your only option for a healthy lunch at work was to pack a salad. No one wants to eat a salad every day. There is also the social challenge of going out to lunch with your coworkers. You can’t exactly bring your own food into a restaurant. The good news is that you don’t have to look very hard to find healthy meals that aren’t salad in many restaurants.
Almost all major restaurants have menu items fit for people with dietary limitations. Gluten free is now a more common phrase on menus. If you have a peanut allergy, it is much easier to skim the list of ingredients. You can also just mention it to the server for help finding safe options. It is also easier than ever to find restaurants that only serve healthy options. You can eat vegan, low-calorie, and low-carb without having to bring your own lunch. For people with special dietary needs, this represents major progress.
Work from Home Options
It has never been easier to work from home. It used to be said in whispers because the very idea had negative connotations. The back pages of sketchy circulars that used to be quite prevalent always had many listings for “business opportunities” you could do from home. Even now, one of the most reliable ways of being scammed is to follow a link on the internet that was generated when you searched for working from home jobs.
Because of the pandemic, many companies had no choice but to allow people to work from home. Big companies have always opposed the work from home movement. Now that circumstances have forced their hand, they are finding that it saves them a ton of money while not killing productivity. You no longer have to be hesitant to say you work from home. That is a real improvement for those who had trouble commuting every day.
Progress is very often slow and uneven. But it is still the order of the day. Take a moment to celebrate the wins in flexible housing options, healthy dining options, and work from home options.